In a few minutes Harrison Barnes will announce the college he will attend. A 6-6 wing from Iowa, he is considered the top basketball player in his class.
Meanwhile, a nervous nation waits.
Ok, that's not true. Bored people await.
Recruiting is woefully overblown. There's something wrong with getting worked up about where that special little sophomore plans to play basketball or football. I don't trust adults who get hung up on it. They track high school juniors and sophomores and freshmen.
He's going to Western Carolina. No he's going to UCLA. No he's going to Harvard.
Where's the 27th-ranked small forward from South Dakota leaning? How about the 12th ranked Texas tight end? The seventh-grader from Savannah, what about him? The anticipation is unbearable.
It's like Christmas!
There's a large segment of the population, at least 60%, that I would encourage to turn off the computer, TV and radio and go outside and walk or run, talk to other humans and breathe fresh air. Recruiting nerds are right up there, or down there, with people who write on message boards.
Let high school athletes be high school athletes. They'll be introduced to the pressures of big-time athletics soon enough.
Years ago, Vince Carter, the former North Carolina star who now plays for the Orlando Magic, was a high school phenomenon in Daytona Beach, Fla. Somebody called the Daytona Beach News-Journal, identified himself as me and asked if there was anything new about Carter, any indication of the school to which he was leaning. This went on several times a week for weeks.
A writer there eventually called me. He knew me enough to know that I would go to Daytona International Speedway, Lowe's Motor Speedway, I-77, I-485 and I-85 sit in traffic before I would waste my time calling about something that was Carter's business and not mine.
Never found out who the guy was, but the newspaper stopped taking his calls. I deduced, however, that he lived in his mom's basement.
I don't get it. if you love high school sports, go to high school games. But this isn't about high school sports. It's about gossip. I think he's going to North Carolina. No, he's going to Duke. No, he's going to Oklahoma. It almost makes me wish players could go straight from high school to the NBA.
I would never tell the people hung up on recruiting to get a life because I hate cliches even more than I hate recruiting.
But as soon as the decision of Harrison Barnes becomes official, I would tell them to go outside and play.